If you are like most people, even if you know you don’t want to stay married, you probably wouldn’t dream of filing for divorce right before the holidays. Not only is it a terrible time to have to move, but you could impact how your family members experience holidays for years to come with bad timing.
If you want to move on from your unhappy marriage, filing for divorce in the beginning of the new year might be the way to go. What steps should you take in the next few weeks before you talk with a lawyer or file any legal paperwork?
Get copies of your household financial records
Especially if you don’t handle the taxes or household accounts on your own, you may not know the household income or other important details about your assets. Getting copies of all of the most important household financial documents will help you avoid a situation where your ex hides or destroys information you need to achieve a fair settlement.
Make an inventory of what you own and the value of your assets
Some people will do just about anything to diminish the value of their household estates when they file for divorce. This might include giving items away to other people or throwing things out just so they don’t have to share the value of that item with you.
Going through your family possessions and anything else acquired during the marriage, even if it belongs to your spouse, can help you create a comprehensive list of your assets and debts. Having a clear idea of what you own and owe will not only help you ask for a fair outcome in your divorce proceedings, but it will also help you show if your ex intentionally diminishes the value of the marital estate.
Even if you hope to file an uncontested divorce with the cooperation of your ex, you will likely want to get your hands on important information, make plans about where you live after you file for divorce and talk about other complicating factors with a lawyer before you ever bring the topic up to your spouse.